Review by Annie Cronin Romano
If you don’t grasp inspiration the moment it strikes, that flash of brilliance can slip away…and rediscovering it can be a disheartening task. The powerful need to mold an idea immediately is a feeling that creative minds—and imaginative children—understand well, and Amanda Moeckel’s debut picture book, KHALIDA AND THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SONG (Page Street Kids, 2018), captures the essence of that sentiment beautifully. Using evocative illustrations & rhythmic text, Moeckel depicts the yearning to grasp inspiration before it is gone (“…but her ears couldn’t hear it”) and the amazing impact capturing that moment can have (“Music flowed through her fingers, onto the keys, and into the air”). The illustrations have a soft yet powerful palette of purples and creams, with the addition of pinks and reds to represent the melody Khalida pursues in the story.
Though not all children have the spark for a song skirting along their minds, most know the excitement and energy that creativity awakens, and Khalida’s experience is certain to resonate with young ones and adults alike. Visually lovely and with text that flows into a sweet read-aloud, KHALIDA AND THE MOST BEAUTIFUL SONG is one picture book you won’t want to let slip away. (Fiction picture book for ages 4-8)
Amanda Moeckel’s debut is a strong example of writing and illustration that interweave seamlessly to effectively present a non-tangible experience.
For more information on Amanda Moeckel’s work, visit http://amandamoeckel.com/.
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